Mike Huckabee's Weekly Column Lifted Material From The AP And Bill Clinton

The Republican presidential candidate's column ran from 2000 and 2006 and appears to have cut-and-pasted language from sources ranging from the Washington Post to an Arkansas Supreme Court justice's opinion to a quote from Bill Clinton.

Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee appears to have committed plagiarism while governor of Arkansas, cut-and-pasting from an array of sources when writing a weekly column that ran on his official state website.

Huckabee wrote columns between 2000 and 2006 that contain language identical to or closely resembling that in articles by news organizations such as the Associated Press and the Washington Post, the testimony of a state police officer before a House subcommittee, an Arkansas Supreme Court Justice's opinion, a Yale University brochure, and a Clinton Foundation press release, including a quote from Bill Clinton, among other sources.

A Huckabee spokesperson said BuzzFeed News' allegations were not "evidence of plagiarism," but rather "an election year political witch hunt."

Although the columns were written in the first person and sometimes opened with the line, "Hello, this is Gov. Mike Huckabee with this week's comment from my corner of the Capitol," the spokesperson distanced the governor directly from the columns, saying they "were written by communications staff."

The plagiarism in Huckabee's columns, which BuzzFeed News accessed through an archiving service, followed certain patterns. Huckabee often made passing mention of a source, then failed to acknowledge how much of or where the column's diction and structure was taken from.

A column published on April 1, 2000 notes that Colonel Thomas Mars of the Arkansas State Police had recently testified before the House Subcommittee on Crime and suggests that they had a discussion. It does not, however, disclose that much of the preceding narrative, which describes the death of a state trooper and a deputy county sheriff, as well as the dynamics of the meth industry in Arkansas, is taken from Mars' testimony.

He plagiarized the Washington Post in a similar fashion. Huckabee observed that the re-surfacing of ivory-billed woodpecker, previously thought to be extinct, had made the front page of the Post. But later in the May 2005 column, Huckabee does not quote or cite the paper, though some of his lines are verbatim duplicates of lines in the Post's story. "It was about 1 p.m. and overcast," and "It landed on a tree trunk about 60 feet away. Sparling's camera was in a rubber bag on his lap," are sentences that appear in both.

By the same token, in a March 2006 column, Huckabee attributed some statistics to "the Supreme Court" without acknowledging that much of the language in the previous and subsequent paragraphs was the same as that in a March 2000 opinion by Arkansas Supreme Court Justice Robert L. Brown.

"Local funds were collected from the local tax base tied to property values within the districts," Huckabee wrote, changing Brown's "tied to" to "collected from." "School districts with higher property values obviously generated higher local taxes and more money available for education." Where Huckabee wrote 'obviously,' Brown had written 'necessarily.'

On other occasions, Huckabee cited the findings of studies or reports, sometimes explicitly suggesting that he had read them in their original versions, while in fact recycling text from summaries of those studies.

A column Huckabee wrote in August 2003, opens by claiming, "I've recently been reading a number of studies that show that the biggest factor in determining whether young people earn a bachelor's degree from college is a strong academic curriculum in high school." He then summarizes those studies in language that strongly resembled summaries previously published in a report by the Education Commission of the States.

That report's summary of one 1999 study is almost identical to Huckabee's opening sentence. "According to this study the biggest factor in determining whether young people earn a bachelor's degree is participation in a strong academic curriculum in high school," it says.

Sometimes Huckabee seems to have reorganized phrases in which the words themselves are the same or slightly changed the wording while maintaining the same structure. An October 2004 column evinces such tactics, apparently mimicking a Yale brochure advertising the achievements of the Schools of the 21st Century program in Arkansas.

At other times, Huckabee appears to have deployed the straightforward plagiarism technique of simply presenting another person's phrasing as his own with no reference to the source. Examples of this can be found in a column in July 2002, which includes a sentence identical to one in an Associated Press story from just over two week earlier and a June 2004 column that re-states the wording of the employee of a trucking company quoted the month before in the Christian Science Monitor.

Two July 2000 columns also appear to copy lines and quotes from an April 2000 Business Wire report. On July 1, Huckabee appropriated the claim of the CEO of the Delta Enterprise Corporation, quoted in Business Wire, that, "If the gap between the Delta and other regions is going to close, we must complement manufacturing recruiting with investments in technology, health services and other promising sectors of our economy. There's not a single solution or a simple one."

Finally, Huckabee wrote a May 2006 column with language first seen in a press release by the Clinton Foundation.

The column and press release described an initiative in which Huckabee was involved in his capacity as a leader of an organization called the Alliance for a Healthier Generation. It is unclear if his staff issued a press releases to match the Clinton Foundation's, but regardless, there is one glaring overlap between Huckabee's column and the press release.

In one paragraph, Huckabee cites a quote by former President Bill Clinton, who called what the governor describes as "new guidelines to combat childhood obesity" and "a bold step forward in the struggle to help America's kids live healthier lives."

Huckabee then takes credit for the ensuing words of praise for leaders of the beverage companies that helped craft the guidelines.

"I commend them for taking this important step," he wrote on May 10, 2006. "There is a lot of work to be done to turn this problem around but this is a big step in the right direction and it will help improve the diet of millions of students across the country."

Compare this to Clinton's quote in the press release, published on May 3: "I commend them for being here today and for taking this important step. There is a lot of work to be done to turn this problem around but this is a big step in the right direction and it will help improve the diet of millions of students across the country."

Here is the full comment from Huckabee's spokeswoman:

"If you look at the data and care to check the facts, you will find no evidence of plagiarism, but you will find evidence of an election year political witch hunt. During Governor Huckabee's tenure in Arkansas, the weekly columns and weekly radio addresses were written by communications staff and the sources were numerous. They frequently cited agencies and cabinet members who were more than happy to provide the information; often times the content originated from conversations with the governor himself. The communications office was often encouraged to use data and information that was provided through Gov. Huckabee's service as Chairman of the Council of State Governments and Chairman of the Education Commission of the States."

And here are the examples of plagiarism mentioned above, and others:

Here's Colonel Thomas Mars, 2/25/2000:



"…On August 24th, 1999 Trooper Tracy Spencer and Madison County Deputy Sheriff Herb Marshall became involved in a gun battle when they encountered a methamphetamine lab operator at his residence in Madison County. Trooper Spencer was wounded during this encounter and the suspect was fatally shot…"



"…Until the 1980s, methamphetamine production and distribution was primarily associated with outlaw motorcycle gangs in California and Texas who supplied users and distributors in Arkansas, as well as other parts of the United States. During this same period, seizures of methamphetamine labs were made in various parts of the State in small numbers. Many of the lab operators retreated to rural areas of our State from OK, Texas and California to avoid detection, law enforcement and enhanced criminal penalties."



"…In 1991, only two clandestine lab seizures in Arkansas were reported to the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA); by 1997, officers seized 242 labs. In 1998, 434 labs were seized, placing Arkansas 3rd per capita in seizures in the United States. By 1999, Arkansas law enforcement officers seized 554 labs ranking Arkansas number one in lab seizures per capita in the United States."



"…Operators of these methamphetamine laboratories are often well armed and their labs occasionally booby-trapped and equipped with security devices. Weaponry— ranging from a single firearm—to arsenals of high-powered weapons are commonly found. Trooper Spencer, as mentioned at the beginning of my testimony, was wounded by a suspect who was under the influence of methamphetamine and armed with a Ruger Mini assault rifle and two handguns. The suspect fired approximately 35 rounds at officers before being fatally wounded."

"The identity of manufacturers of methamphetamine varies from high school dropouts with no real chemistry education, to professionals with graduate degrees in chemistry. Typically, however, these cooks have little formal training. Instead, they follow a handwritten recipe, recipes obtained off the Internet, or they have learned to produce methamphetamine from underground publications, apprenticeships, or fellow inmates during periods of incarceration. In the past, manufacturers closely guarded their drug recipes; but with modern computer technology and the increasing willingness of them to share their knowledge, this information is now available to anyone with computer access."

"…the presence of ignitable, corrosive reactive, and toxic chemicals at the sites, have resulted in explosions, fires, toxic fumes and irreparable damage to human health and the environment…The size of the lab does not matter when it comes to the danger level involved. The smaller labs are usually more dangerous than the larger operations because the 'cooks' are generally less experienced with safety issues that arise when dealing with chemicals and waste products."

And here's Huckabee, 4/1/2000:



On Aug. 24, 1999, Arkansas State Trooper Tracy Spencer and Madison County Deputy Sheriff Herb Marshall were involved in a gun battle that erupted after they encountered a meth lab operator at his home. Trooper Spencer was wounded, and the suspect was killed.

Most Arkansans would be shocked to know how many meth labs there are in our state. Until the late 1980s, production and distribution of this dangerous drug primarily was associated with outlaw motorcycle gangs in California and Texas. As the years passed, lab operators migrated to rural Arkansas from Texas and California to avoid detection. During that same period, Mexican drug trafficking organizations replaced motorcycle gangs as the leading meth manufacturers.

In 1991, only two lab seizures in Arkansas were reported to the federal Drug Enforcement Administration. By 1997, officers had raided 242 labs. There were 434 labs seized in 1998, placing Arkansas third nationally in per capita seizures. By last year, the number was 554, and Arkansas unfortunately was No. 1.

The drug is now readily available in all 75 counties. We've seen violent acts committed by those under the influence of this drug, those needing to buy it and those manufacturing it. Operators of these labs usually are well-armed. There often are booby traps surrounding the labs. The man who wounded Trooper Spencer was armed with a Ruger Mini-14 assault rifle and two handguns. He fired almost 35 rounds at officers before he was killed.

Col. Tom Mars, director of the Arkansas State Police, is becoming an expert on this subject and recently testified at Springdale during a field hearing of a U.S. House subcommittee. He tells me those who manufacture meth range from high school dropouts with no chemistry education to professionals with graduate degrees in chemistry. Typically, though, there's little formal training. They can follow handwritten recipes, recipes pulled off the Internet or step-by-step guidelines in underground publications. In essence, the necessary information is available to anyone with a laptop computer.

The presence of toxic chemicals at lab sites can lead to explosions, fires and toxic fumes. The size of the lab doesn't matter. They're all dangerous. In fact, the smaller labs are usually more dangerous because the cooks are less experienced when it comes to safety issues.

Here's William Bynum, President and CEO of Delta Enterprise Corporation, Business Wire, 4/27/2000



'Our focus began to shift in early 1998," said Bynum. "It was clear that future job growth in the Delta would be driven by the service sector. If the gap between the Delta and other areas was going to close, then we have to complement manufacturing and industrial recruiting with investments in technology, health services and other promising sectors. Since ECD diversified its financing the number of applicants has increased steadily. The first quarter of 2000 was our most productive ever in terms of the numbers of loans provided and businesses selected."



…'There is not a single or simple solution to improving the Delta's economic prospects,' Bynum said. 'However, with increasing attention to this region by our nation's leaders and continued support and collaboration with the private sector and public entities, the window of opportunity for incremental gains is bigger than ever before.'"

And here's Huckabee, 7/1/2000:



Last month, I joined members of this Delta work group in Forrest City for a public meeting. I was gratified by the interest shown. People care. They simply are not ready to write off a huge section of our state. If the gap between the Delta and other regions is going to close, we must complement manufacturing recruiting with investments in technology, health services and other promising sectors of our economy. There's not a single solution or a simple one. But the strong economy and technological advances at least give us the chance to do something great. Let's not waste this opportunity.

Here's Business Wire:



The Delta remains one of the few areas of the country that could supply companies with an ample pool of potential workers who have a strong work ethic.

And here's Huckabee, 7/8/2000:



I'm an optimist when it comes to the Arkansas Delta. I see good things ahead for this region of our state due to its available labor force in what is otherwise a tight labor market nationally. It's one of the few areas of the country that can supply companies with large numbers of employees who have a strong work ethic.

Here's the Associated Press, 7/3/2002:



In Pennsylvania, lawmakers dealt with a $1.3 billion revenue shortfall by raising cigarette taxes and fees charged to waste haulers. But they also took about $750 million from the rainy day fund, leaving $300 million for future contingencies.

And here's Huckabee, 7/20/2002:



In Pennsylvania, lawmakers dealt with a $1.3 billion revenue shortfall by raising cigarette taxes and fees charged to waste haulers. They also took almost $750 million from the state's rainy-day fund. That's 70 percent of the money that was in reserve.

Here's the Lexington Herald-Leader, 4/4/2003



…Comprehensive tax reform is the next step, he said, and a part of those discussions will hinge on educating people about the needs schools face. The $740 million figure released yesterday was based on an education-financing model that builds in the latest and most comprehensive research on what works in the classroom. Odden and Picus first developed a model of ideal staffing and resource levels for an elementary or secondary school with 500 students. Once they developed that template, they calculated price tags. Current spending at conventional Kentucky schools was analyzed, existing resources were reallocated, and the total deficit was calculated…

And here's Huckabee, 4/26/2003:



As you can see, the Kentucky adequacy study calls for hundreds of millions of dollars each year in additional spending. The figures are based on an education-financing model that incorporates the latest, most comprehensive research on what works in the classroom. The consultants developed a model of ideal staffing and resource levels for an elementary or secondary school with 500 students. Once they developed the model, they calculated the costs. Current spending was analyzed, existing resources were reallocated and the total deficit was then calculated.

Here's the University of Arkansas for Medical Science Communications and Marketing Office, 5/29/2003:



Currently housed in the Arkansas Cancer Research Center at UAMS, the Myeloma Institute is the world's largest center for the treatment of multiple myeloma, a relatively uncommon form of cancer. According to the study by the University of Arkansas at Little Rock's Institute for Economic Advancement, more than 1,600 patients are treated by the institute annually. The majority of those patients are from outside of Arkansas, with an average of one person accompanying each patient. Combined, an average of 3,312 people come to Little Rock each year in conjunction with visits to the institute, usually staying a total of three months...

And here's Huckabee, 6/21/2003:



For instance, a recent report showed that the Myeloma Institute for Research and Therapy contributes more than $166 million annually to the Arkansas economy. That institute is now the world's largest center for the treatment of multiple myeloma, which is a relatively uncommon form of cancer. The study by the University of Arkansas at Little Rock's Institute for Economic Advancement showed that more than 1,600 patients are treated each year by the Myeloma Institute. Most of those patients come from outside the state. Including the friends and relatives who accompany them to Arkansas for treatment, an average of 3,312 people come to our state each year, staying an average of three months.

Here's the Education Commission of the States, August-September 2001, on a 1999 study by the Office of Educational Research:



According to this study the biggest factor in determining whether young people earn a bachelor's degree is participation in a strong academic curriculum in high school. The completion of a solid academic core was more strongly correlated with a bachelor's degree than high school test scores, gradepoint averages or class rank, the study found. Moreover, an intensive academic curriculum in high school had the strongest positive effect for black and Hispanic students. The study, conducted by Clifford Adelman, OERI senior research analyst, was based on data from a national cohort of students who were followed from the time they entered 10th grade in 1980 until roughly 1993. The study looked at 24 variables to see which had the strongest influence on whether young people earned a bachelor's degree. A student's race was not a significant predictor of whether a young person graduated from a four-year college, once other factors were taken into account, the study found. A student's family income had little effect after the first year of college. The level of mathematics that students studied in high school appeared to have the strongest continuing influence on whether they earned a bachelor's degree. Finishing a math course beyond the level of Algebra II more than doubled the odds that a student would get a bachelor's degree, according to the study. Adelman's study bolsters what many school reform advocates have been saying for years: One of the best ways to close the attainment gap between minority and non-minority students is to ensure that all young people complete a solid academic curriculum in high school.

And here's Huckabee, 8/30/2003:



I've recently been reading a number of studies that show that the biggest factor in determining whether young people earn a bachelor's degree from college is a strong academic curriculum in high school. I've been in all parts of Arkansas this summer preaching the need for a broad, rich curriculum at the high school level. As I keep saying, the "C word" in this debate over the future of public education in our state isn't "consolidation." It's "curriculum." That's where our focus should be.

A 1999 study by the Office of Educational Research and Improvement at the U.S. Department of Education found that the completion of a solid academic core is more strongly correlated with obtaining a bachelor's degree than class rank, test scores or grade point averages. The study tracked a group of students from across the country from the time they entered the 10th grade in 1980 until 1993. The study looked at 24 variables to determine which factor had the strongest influence on whether these students earned a bachelor's degree. A student's race wasn't a significant predictor of whether the student would graduate from college. And family income had little effect following the first year of college. The most important influence, in fact, appeared to be the level of mathematics students had studied in high school. Completing a math course beyond the level of Algebra II more than doubled the odds that a student would graduate from college. This study bolsters the idea that the best way to close the attainment gap between minority and non-minority students is to ensure that all students complete a solid high school curriculum.

Here's the Education Commission of the States on a report by the National Center for Education Statistics:



The findings of this study demonstrated a consistent advantage for students who completed rigorous high school curricul — nd to a lesser extent for those completing mid-level curricula over their peers enrolled in lower-level courses. Students who completed rigorous curricula were more likely to stay enrolled in their first institution or, if they transferred, to stay on track to a bachelor's degree… The results of this study suggest that completing a rigorous academic curriculum in high school may help students overcome socioeconomic disadvantages such as low family income and parents with no college experience, as well as helping students who, for whatever reasons, transfer to another institution.

And here's Huckabee:



Meanwhile, a 2001 study by the National Center for Education Statistics found that students who complete a rigorous high school course of study have a consistent advantage over those enrolled in lower-level courses. Students who completed the rigorous curriculum were more likely to stay enrolled in their first college. Those who transferred to another college were more likely to stay on track for a bachelor's degree. The study showed that completing a rigorous academic curriculum in high school can help students overcome socioeconomic disadvantages such as low family incomes and parents with no college experience.

Here's the Education Commission of the States on the a study for the National Commission on the High School Senior Year:



…While almost three-quarters of high school graduates go on to postsecondary education, fewer than half have completed a full college-preparatory program, the study found. And even when high schools eliminate formal tracking and give all students an opportunity to take college-prep courses, many students don't. One reason, according to the study: Overworked guidance counselors typically don't have the time to help all students choose their courses wisely. The ratio of students to guidance counselors in the nation's schools, the study noted, is about 500-to-1. Much of the report focuses on the lack of alignment between the high school curriculum and the kind of knowledge and skills required for success in both the workplace and the postsecondary system… The gulf between K-12 goals and the skills needed to begin college-level work is reflected in the fact that more than one-quarter of the students who enter college are required to take remedial courses in one or more subjects.

And here's Huckabee:



A 2001 study prepared for the National Commission on the High School Senior Year found that while almost three-fourths of high school graduates go on to post-secondary education in this country, fewer than half of those students complete a college-preparatory program. The study said overworked high school guidance counselors typically don't have the time to help all of their students choose courses wisely. The ratio of students to guidance counselors is about 500 to 1. According to the study, there's also a lack of alignment between the high school curriculum and the kinds of skills required for success in post-secondary education and the workplace. More than a fourth of the students who enter college in this country are required to take remedial courses in one or more subjects. Students who require remediation range from a low of 13 percent at private four-year colleges to a high of 41 percent at public two-year institutions.

Here's Charlotte Cornell Postlewaite writing for the Council of State Governments on "Preventing Childhood Obesity", 2/2003:



"In Naperville, Illinois, Phil Lawler, a physical education instructor, has introduced a heart-healthy, 40-minute aerobic workout for middle school students. Lawler's program has captured the attention of hundreds of school systems nationwide and has been endorsed by P.E.4Life, a nonprofit organization founded by Jim Baugh of Wilson Sporting Goods to promote funding for daily physical education programs across the country. Lawler's "New PE" provides steppers, stationary bikes, ropes, treadmills and other cardiovascular workouts that emphasize movement instead of team skills. Lawler conducts seminars at Madison Junior High, the inaugural P.E.4Life Institute. One of Lawler's disciples is Tim McCord, a middle school physical education teacher from Titusville, Pa. McCord and school officials convinced the Titusville school board and The Coca Cola Company to underwrite $30,000 in high-tech cardiovascular exercise equipment after he attended one of Lawler's seminars. According to Karen Jez, middle school principal, Blue Cross-Blue Shield also contributed a $6,000 Tri-Fit diagnostic machine to record heart rate, flexibility and a litany of other data for student health portfolios that travel with the students in grades six through 12…"

And here's Huckabee, 4/3/2004:



I wish Arkansas school districts would follow the example of Naperville, Ill., where physical education instructor Phil Lawler has introduced a 40-minute daily aerobic workout for middle school students. What some have classified as the "new physical education" provides stationary bikes, ropes, treadmills and cardiovascular workouts that emphasize movement rather than team skills. School districts often can find private support to purchase the equipment needed for such programs. After attending one of Phil Lawler's seminars, middle school physical education teacher Tim McCord from Titusville, Pa., convinced the Coca-Cola Co. to help underwrite $30,000 in high-tech cardiovascular exercise equipment. Blue Cross-Blue Shield also contributed a $6,000 diagnostic machine to record heart rate, flexibility and other data.

Here's Postlewaite:



A $214,000 hospital commitment for exercise machines at five middle schools helped launch the first phase of the community-based initiative.

And here's Huckabee:



A $214,000 commitment from the hospital for exercise machines at five middle schools launched the first phase of the community-based initiative.

Here's Mark Greenway, quoted in the Christian Science Monitor, 5/24/2004:



"We're saving millions of dollars in medical costs," says Mark Greenway of J.B. Hunt's human resources. "We're building a healthier workforce that misses fewer days of work."

And here's Huckabee, 6/26/2004:



J.B. Hunt already is saving millions of dollars in medical costs. At the same time, this giant trucking company is building a healthier workforce that misses fewer days of work.

Here's a Yale.edu brochure on the Schools of 21st Century Program:



Once a month, a room at the high school in the Rogers School District fills up with children under age three and their parents. The English- and Spanish-speaking parents mix and mingle with each other and with the staff of the Parents as Teachers (PAT) program, making friends and finding answers to the myriad challenges of raising young children. The 90-minute meetings give children time to learn and play at various activity centers designed to instruct the parents on appropriate ways to stimulate and nurture their children's cognitive, social, linguistic and motor development. The staff members, several of whom are bilingual, model ways for parents to enhance their children's development and answer parents' questions about everything from eating and sleeping to potty training to language development…

And here's Huckabee, 10/23/2004:



Sometimes seemingly simple things can make a huge difference when it comes to educating our children. In the Rogers School District, a classroom fills up once a month with children under the age of 3 and their parents. The parents, who speak Spanish and English, visit with each other and talk about raising young children. The 90-minute meetings give the children time to play at various activity centers while their parents learn how to stimulate their children's development. Staff members from the school district's Parents As Teachers program answer questions about everything from potty training to language development.

Here's the Yale brochure:



OUTREACH Stars and stripes covered every table, wall and person, when Forrest City School District held their annual "Round-up" event in April to register 3-, 4- and 5-year olds for kindergarten and preschool. When the doors opened at 10 a.m., more than 100 people eagerly waited to approach the tables decorated with patriotic flowers, balloons and flags, and staffed by teachers wearing "Uncle Sam" hats. By the end of the day, more than 400 people had been welcomed and registered… In addition to enrolling their children in the appropriate programs, all parents received a calendar with suggested learning activities for every day of the summer to help prepare their children for school.

And here's Huckabee:



When the doors open at 10 a.m., there are more than 100 people waiting. By the end of the day, more than 400 area residents will have shown up for an event designed to get children excited about attending school. Parents receive calendars with suggested learning activities for each day of the summer. These calendars help them prepare their children for school.

Here's the Yale brochure:



These schools become year-round, multi-service community hubs dedicated to the healthy growth and development of children beginning at birth, creating an all-important platform to build on for success in school and beyond.

And here's Huckabee:



Rather than just being places where children come during the day for nine months a year, schools are transformed into year-round community hubs dedicated to the growth and development of children from birth to college.

Here's a press release from Achieve.org, 1/25/2005:



Nearly one of three eighth graders in America does not graduate from high school, and half of African- American and Hispanic students do not make it to graduation day. Colleges and employers report that many of those who do graduate lack basic skills. Only a small fraction of those who go on to postsecondary education succeed in earning a degree. Half of those who enter two-year institutions, for example, never return for their second year.

And here's Huckabee, 2/19/2005:



Almost a third of eighth-grade students across the country don't go on to graduate from high school. Half of African-American and Hispanic students fail to graduate. Colleges and employers report that many of those who do graduate lack basic skills. Only a fraction of those who go on to college earn a degree. Half of those who enter two-year institutions, for example, never return for the second year of school.

Here's the press release:



The global economy has placed a higher premium on workers' ability to formulate new ideas and solve problems, rather than produce tangible goods. A solid education is increasingly important for young people and the nation to maintain competitive in the job market.

And here's Huckabee:



The global economy has placed a higher premium on workers' ability to formulate new ideas and solve problems, rather than simply produce tangible goods. A rigorous high school curriculum is increasingly important for the nation to remain competitive.

David Brown and Eric Pianin, Washington Post, 4/29/2005:



Then Gene M. Sparling, 49, a red-bearded father of two from Hot Springs, Ark., got lucky.

He was on the second day of a four-day solo paddle through the Big Woods in February 2004. It was about 1 p.m. and overcast. He was drifting down a small stream that had flooded the woods.

"I had just set my paddle down and had leaned back in my seat and was thinking what a beautiful, fantastic, awe-inspiring place this was," he said yesterday.

Out of the treetops came a huge woodpecker, straight at him. It landed on a tree trunk about 60 feet away. Sparling's camera was in rubber bag on his lap, but he did not go for it. Instead he looked at the bird and noted its markings before it moved up the trunk, playing peekaboo with him, and flew away.

And here's Huckabee:



Sparling, who has a red beard and is the father of two children, was on the second day of a four-day solo paddle through the swamp. It was about 1 p.m. and overcast as he drifted down a small stream. He said, "I had just set my paddle down and had leaned back in my seat and was thinking what a beautiful, fantastic, awe-inspiring place this was." That's when the huge woodpecker came out of the treetops and straight toward him. It landed on a tree trunk about 60 feet away. Sparling's camera was in a rubber bag on his lap. But he feared he would spook the bird if he went for it. The woodpecker moved up the tree's trunk before flying away.

Here's Robert L. Brown's opinion for the Supreme Court of Arkansas, 3/2/2000:



What was at issue in the Lake View case was the disparity in funds available for education in school districts across the state under the school funding system. In 1994, school districts received approximately thirty percent of their revenue from federal funds. Local funds were tied to the local tax base which was tied to property values within the districts. School districts with higher property values necessarily generated high local taxes and more money available for education. This resulted in significant disparities. As an example, disparities in per pupil expenditures in the 1992/93 school year ranged from $4,064 spent per pupil in the Little Rock School District to $2,270 spent per pupil in the Mountain View School District. One of the purposes of state aid was to equalize per pupil expenditures regardless of the wealth of the school district and to make available equal educational opportunities for all students.

In its November 9, 1994 order ,the chancery court concluded that the equal protection provisions of the Arkansas Constitution applied to Arkansas school funding and that there was no rational basis for the disparity in available school funds among poor and wealthy school districts under Arkansas's school funding system.

And here's Huckabee, 3/29/2006:



To give you more background, what was at issue in the Lake View case was the disparity in funds available for education in school districts across the state under the then existing school funding system. In 1994, school districts received approximately 30 percent of their revenue from local funds, 60 percent from state assistance, and 10 percent from federal funds. Local funds were collected from the local tax base tied to property values within the districts. School districts with higher property values obviously generated higher local taxes and more money available for education.

This formula resulted in significant disparities, according to the Supreme Court. For example, variations in per pupil expenditures in the 1992-1993 school year ranged from $4,064 spent per pupil in the Little Rock School District to $2,270 spent per pupil in the Mountain View School District, the Court cited.

In its original Nov. 9, 1994 order, the chancery court judge who heard the case ruled there was no rational basis for the variation in available school funds among poor and wealthy school districts under Arkansas' school funding system. The Supreme Court ultimately agreed.

Here's a Clinton Foundation press release, 5/3/2006:



Under the terms of the agreement, the beverage industry will work to spread these standards to 75% of the nation's schools prior to the beginning of the 2008-2009 school year. The industry will strive to fully implement these guidelines prior to the beginning of the 2009-2010 school year, provided schools and school districts are willing to amend existing contracts.

And here's Huckabee, 5/10/2006:



Under the terms of the agreement, the beverage industry will work to spread these standards to 75 percent of the nation's schools prior to the beginning of the 2008-2009 school year. The industry will strive to fully implement these guidelines prior to the 2009-2010 school year, provided schools and school districts are willing to amend existing contracts.

Here's Bill Clinton, quoted in the press release:



"This is an important announcement and a bold step forward in the struggle to help America's kids live healthier lives," said President Clinton, a leader of the Alliance for a Healthier Generation. "These industry leaders recognize that childhood obesity is a problem and have stepped up to help solve it. I commend them for being here today and for taking this important step. There is a lot of work to be done to turn this problem around but this is a big step in the right direction and it will help improve the diet of millions of students across the country."

And here's Huckabee:



Former President Clinton described this as a bold step forward in the struggle to help America's kids live healthier lives. We are both pleased these industry leaders have recognized childhood obesity as a problem and have stepped up to help solve it. I commend them for taking this important step. There is a lot of work to be done to turn this problem around, but this is a gigantic step in the right direction and will help improve the diet of millions of students across the country.

Here's the press release:



Under these newly established guidelines, elementary schools will only sell water, and eight ounce, calorie-capped servings of certain juices with no added sweeteners and servings of fat free and low fat regular and flavored milks. Middle schools will apply the elementary school standard with portion sizes increased slightly to 10 oz.

And here's Huckabee:



Under these newly established guidelines, elementary schools will only sell water, eight-ounce, calorie-capped servings of certain juices with no added sweeteners, and servings of fat free and low fat regular and flavored milks. Middle schools will apply the elementary school standard with portion sizes increased slightly to 10 ounces.

Here's the press release:



In addition to the beverages available in elementary and middle schools, high schools will also sell no calorie and low calorie drinks, such as bottled water, diet and unsweetened teas, diet sodas, fitness water, low calorie sports drinks, flavored water, and seltzers; as well as light juices and sports drinks.

And here's Huckabee:



In addition to the beverages available in elementary and middle schools, high schools will also sell no calorie and low calorie drinks, such as bottled water, diet and unsweetened teas, diet sodas, fitness water, low calorie sports drinks, flavored water, and seltzers, as well as light juices and sports drinks.

Here's the press release:



At least half of available beverages in high schools will now be water, no calorie, and low calorie selections. Light juices and sports drinks will be sold in 12 ounce containers with no more than 100 calories per container, while 100% juices and non fat and low fat milks will also be sold in containers up to 12 ounces.

And here's Huckabee:



At least half of available beverages in high schools will now be water, along with no calorie and low calorie selections. Light juices and sports drinks will be sold in 12 ounce containers with no more than 100 calories per container, while 100 percent juices and non fat and low fat milks will also be sold in containers up to 12 ounces.